By Kevin Anthony Stoda
I have a lot of Germanic blood on both sides of my family. Previously, I have written on the topic of being an American in Germany and being either of German descent (or simply German) in America previously. One writing of mine was a review of the book TEARING THE SILENCE: On Being German in America , a collection of interviews which were conducted, compiled and edited by psychologist Ursula Hegi.
Heggi focused primarily on Germans who were mostly too young to remember WWII (and felt little responsibility for the Hitler era) but who had grown of age in America following WWII.
Recently, I came across another set of historical examples on the perplexing reality of the Germanic peoples in the American landscape of the 20th Century. This particular topic encompasses the great internment of the Germans, Japanese, Italians, and many Latin American German and Japanese in the USA during WWII.
I had long been familiar with the Japanese internments and believe that the Japanese Stodas were also interned at that time. However, until I came across a series of websites and oral histories on the topic of German internment in WWII, I had had no idea how pervasive internment of potential American enemies had been during the Great War against Fascism.
THE SILENCE IN AMERICA ON GERMAN INTERNMENT
The silence on German, Italian, and Latin American internments is still great in places as hot as Crystal City, Texas (120 degrees at times) and as cold and as snowy as Ft. Missoula, Montana or Ft. Lincoln, North Dakota. One web project that is beginning to tell these imprisoned people's stories is at the German American Internee Coalition site.